Advertisement

Dallas chief wants review of police tactics at protest

|
Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2018 9:06 PM
Dominique Alexander speaks to the protesters of the shooting of Botham Jean on Monday, Sept. 10, 2018 at the Jack Evans Police Headquarters in Dallas. Jean was shot Thursday by off-duty Dallas police officer Amber Guyger, who says she mistook his apartment for hers. (Shaban Athuman /The Dallas Morning News via AP)
Jamil Tucker listen to Dominique Alexander as they march down to the Dallas Police Association Office to protest the shooting of Botham Jean on Monday, Sept. 10, 2018 in Dallas. Jean was shot Thursday by off-duty Dallas police officer Amber Guyger, who says she mistook his apartment for hers. (Shaban Athuman /The Dallas Morning News via AP)
Protesters in the shooting death of Botham Jean, gather at the Jack Evans Police Headquarters, Monday, Sept. 10, 2018 in Dallas. Jean was shot Thursday by off-duty Dallas police officer Amber Guyger, who says she mistook his apartment for hers. (Shaban Athuman /The Dallas Morning News via AP)
Protesters in the shooting death of Botham Jean, gather at the Jack Evans Police Headquarters, Monday, Sept. 10, 2018 in Dallas. Jean was shot Thursday by off-duty Dallas police officer Amber Guyger, who says she mistook his apartment for hers. (Shaban Athuman /The Dallas Morning News via AP)
Dallas Police Chief U. Renee Hall and State Senator Royce West listen as people ask questions regarding Botham Shem Jean following an African American Leadership summit on Saturday, Sept. 8, 2018 at Paul Quinn College in Dallas. Jean was shot by a Dallas police officer in his home on Thursday night. (Shaban Athuman/The Dallas Morning News via AP)
This photo provided by the Kaufman County Sheriff's Office shows Amber Renee Guyger. Guyger, a Dallas police officer, was arrested Sunday, Sept. 9, 2018, on a manslaughter warrant in the shooting of a black man at his home, Texas authorities said. The Texas Department of Public Safety said in a news release that Guyger was booked into the Kaufman County Jail and that the investigation is ongoing. It said no additional information is available at this time. (Kaufman County Sheriff's Office via AP)
This Sept. 21, 2017, photo provided by Harding University in Search, Ark., shows Botham Jean leading worship at a university presidential reception in Dallas. Authorities said Friday, Sept. 7, 2018, that a Dallas police officer returning home from work shot and killed Jean, a neighbor, after she said she mistook his apartment for her own. The officer called dispatch to report that she had shot the man Thursday night, police said. (Jeff Montgomery/Harding University via AP)
This Feb. 27, 2014, portrait provided by Harding University in Searcy, Ark., shows Botham Jean. Authorities said Friday, Sept. 7, 2018, that a Dallas police officer returning home from work shot and killed Jean, a neighbor, after she said she mistook his apartment for her own. The officer called dispatch to report that she had shot the man Thursday night, police said. (Jeff Montgomery/Harding University via AP)
Flowers are placed at the front door apartment of Botham Jean on Monday, Sept. 10, 2018 in Dallas. Jean was shot Thursday by off-duty Dallas police officer Amber Guyger, who says she mistook his apartment for hers. (Shaban Athuman /The Dallas Morning News via AP)
Brandt Jean, center left, brother of shooting victim Botham Jean, hugs his sister Allisa Charles-Findley, during a news conference outside the Frank Crowley Courts Building on Monday, Sept. 10, 2018, in Dallas, about the shooting of Botham Jean by Dallas police officer Amber Guyger on Thursday. He was joined by his mother, Allison Jean, second from left, and attorney Benjamin Crump, second from right, as attorney Lee Merritt, right, speaks to the media. (Tom Fox/The Dallas Morning News via AP)
Brandt Jean, center, brother of Botham Jean, cries as he attends a news conference outside the Frank Crowley Courts Building on Monday, Sept. 10, 2018, in Dallas, about the shooting of Botham Jean by Dallas police officer Amber Guyger on Thursday. He was joined by his mother, Allison Jean and attorney Benjamin Crump. (Tom Fox/The Dallas Morning News via AP)

DALLAS (AP) — The Dallas police chief said she has called for a full review and plans to meet with protest leaders after learning about reports that police used pepper-spray projectiles at a demonstration over a black man's death.

Chief U. Renee Hall said in a statement Tuesday that the projectiles, which are called pepper balls and usually contain the chemical in pepper spray, should only be used if there is an immediate threat to the public or if an on-scene commander calls for them to be used. The projectiles irritate the nose and eyes.

Hall said she wants to meet with protest leaders to "address their concerns."

Monday's demonstration came a day after a white Dallas police officer, Amber Guyger, was arrested for manslaughter in the off-duty shooting death of her neighbor, 26-year-old Botham Jean. Authorities have said that Guyger said she mistook Jean's apartment for her own when she fatally shot him last week. She was released on bond.

Demonstrators gathered outside Dallas police headquarters, and several dozen blocked traffic as they marched about half a mile. At one point, police used the pepper-spray projectiles to help control the crowd, according to news reports.

Jean grew up in the Caribbean island nation of St. Lucia before attending college in Arkansas. He graduated from Harding University in 2016 and had been working for accounting firm PwC.

Attorneys for Jean's family have criticized the officer's account of the shooting, saying it contradicted statements from neighbors.

The officer's description of what happened was included in an arrest affidavit prepared by a Texas Ranger and released Monday, shortly after the district attorney announced that the case would be presented to a grand jury, which could decide on more serious charges than manslaughter.

Benjamin Crump, an attorney for Jean's family, said Monday that the affidavit is "very self-serving." Lee Merritt, who also represents the family, called it an attempt to "condone what happened, give her a break."

Guyger, a four-year veteran of the police force, told investigators that she had just ended a 15-hour shift Thursday when she returned in uniform to the South Side Flats apartment complex. She parked on the fourth floor, instead of the third, where she lived, according to the affidavit, possibly suggesting that she was confused or disoriented.

When she put her key in the apartment door, which was unlocked and slightly ajar, it opened, the affidavit said. Inside, the lights were off, and she saw a figure in the darkness that cast a large silhouette across the room, according to the officer's account.

The officer told police that she concluded her apartment was being burglarized and gave verbal commands to the figure, which ignored them. She then drew her weapon and fired twice, the affidavit said.

She called 911 and, when asked where she was, returned to the front door to see she was in the wrong unit, according to the affidavit. Authorities have not released the 911 tapes.

The Dallas County medical examiner's office said Jean died of a gunshot wound to the chest. His death was ruled a homicide.

Merritt said Monday that two independent witnesses have told him they heard knocking on the door in the hallway before the shooting. He said one witness reported hearing a woman's voice saying, "Let me in! Let me in!" Then they heard gunshots, after which one witness said she heard a man's voice say, "Oh my God! Why did you do that?"

Merritt said he believes those were Jean's last words.

Dallas County District Attorney Faith Johnson emphasized that her office was conducting its own probe, in addition to the investigation by the Texas Rangers. She will have the option of presenting more serious charges to the grand jury.

It's not clear if Guyger has an attorney.

Guyger's blood was drawn at the scene to be tested for alcohol and drugs, according to Hall, but authorities have not released results.

___

Sign up for the AP's weekly newsletter showcasing our best reporting from the Midwest and Texas: http://apne.ws/2u1RMfv

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisement